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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation A-08-074
Details
Synopsis: On July 29, 2006, about 1345 central daylight time, a de Havilland DHC-6-100, N203E, registered to Adventure Aviation, LLC, and operated by Skydive Quantum Leap as a local parachute operation flight, crashed into trees and terrain after takeoff from Sullivan Regional Airport, near Sullivan, Missouri. The pilot and five parachutists were killed, and two parachutists were seriously injured. The flight was operated under 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 with no flight plan filed. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed. Witnesses at the airport reported that, shortly after the airplane lifted off from the runway, flames emitted from the airplane’s right engine. The airplane continued to fly low above the treetops before turning right and diving nose first into the ground.
Recommendation: TO THE UNITED STATES PARACHUTE ASSOCIATION: Once the most effective dual-point restraint systems for parachutists are determined, as requested in Safety Recommendation A-08-71, educate your members on the findings and encourage them to use the most effective dual-point restraint systems.
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Acceptable Action
Mode: Aviation
Location: SULLIVAN, MO, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: CHI06FA210
Accident Reports: Crash of Skydive Quantum Leap de Havilland DHC-6-100, N203E
Report #: AAR-08-03
Accident Date: 7/29/2006
Issue Date: 9/25/2008
Date Closed: 2/13/2012
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: United States Parachute Association (Closed - Acceptable Action)
Keyword(s): Jump Operations,

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: United States Parachute Association
Date: 2/13/2012
Response: The findings from the USPA and the FAA’s research on skydiver restraints, including illustrations, were included in the FAA’s AC 105-2D, published in May 2011. The USPA also featured in two of its publications an article summarizing the guidance contained in AC 105-2D. In addition, the USPA provided a link to the FAA’s AC and encouraged operators and skydivers to follow best-practice guidance for the use of restraints in skydiving aircraft. Because these combined actions satisfy Safety Recommendations A-08-73 and -74, the recommendations were classified “Closed—Acceptable Action” on October 19, 2011. We commend the USPA for its responsiveness and enthusiasm in addressing these recommendations. Although we believe that the USPA’s actions satisfy Safety Recommendations A-08-73 and -74, we do not consider them to exceed the recommendations’ scope. Therefore, the recommendations remain classified CLOSED—ACCEPTABLE ACTION.

From: United States Parachute Association
To: NTSB
Date: 10/25/2011
Response: -From Edward M. Scott, Executive Director: Just as I prepared to send this final response to A-08-70, A-08-73, and A-08-74, I received your October 19 letter, indicating that the three recommendations had been classified as “Closed—Acceptable Action.” I ask that you and your staff review this packet fully describing all of our actions, and determine whether any of the recommendations should be reclassified as “Closed—Exceeds Recommended Action.” Restraints USPA organized an industry working-group, which was comprised of staff, parachute harness and aircraft restraint manufacturers, an FAA certified aircraft mechanic who maintains a fleet of skydiving aircraft, and a member ofthe USPA board of directors who has a career in restraint design with General Motors. That group traveled to the Civil Aerospace Medical Institute in Oklahoma City in order to collaborate with the FAA on the restraint project. FAA biodynamic engineers analyzed extensive sled tests of restraints used in various aircraft configurations and their resulting guidance on skydiving aircraft seats and restraints can be found in Appendix 3 ofAC l05-2D. USPA, via the USPA Update e-news to n1en1bers (App. F) and via the USPA Professional e-news to operators (App. G) recommended that all operators and skydivers review the material and follow best-practice guidance for the use of restraints in skydiving aircraft. Summary USPA has corresponded with Mr. Nathan Hoyt of the NTSB, sending him PDF documentation of recently published articles that address pilot training and proficiency, and restraints, that have gone to our members by direct e-mail and in Parachutist. USPA believes we have met and exceeded the intent of NTSB Safety Recommendations A-08-70, A-08-73, and A-08-74 by not only urging our members to adhere to Advisory Circular guidance, but by developing and distributing additional guidance materials to assist operators with pilot training and proficiency.

From: NTSB
To: United States Parachute Association
Date: 10/19/2011
Response: The USPA indicated that it is waiting for the publication of AC 105-2D before disseminating information to encourage member use. However, Mr. Randy Ottinger informed NTSB staff in an August 22, 2011, e-mail that the USPA and the FAA have completed their research on skydiver restraints at the FAA’s Civil Aerospace Medical Institute (CAMI) in Oklahoma City. We note that the findings from this research, including illustrations, can be found in the FAA’s AC 105-2D, which was published in May 2011. The USPA indicated that it has summarized the guidance contained in AC 105-2D, has included this information in two of its publications, and will feature it in a third publication in September 2011. We note that the articles encourage all operators and skydivers to follow best-practice guidance for the use of restraints in skydiving aircraft. However, because the location of this information is either unknown or the information is very hard to find, a link to the AC is provided. Because these combined actions meet the intent of Safety Recommendations A-08-73 and -74, the recommendations are classified CLOSED—ACCEPTABLE ACTION.

From: United States Parachute Association
To: NTSB
Date: 4/7/2011
Response: CC# 201100180: - From Ed Scott, Executive Director: Enclosed you'll find the response by the U.S. Parachute Association to NTSB Safety Recommendation A08-69. After reviewing it, I hope you and your staff will agree that USPA took some bold steps that went above and beyond the actions called for by A-08-09. As I expressed to you at the end of the NTSB hearing on September 16, 2008, USPA was going to use this opportunity to educate and assist our operators with meeting the aircraft inspection and maintenance .~ requirements of the FAA. The cornerstone of our efforts included a revision to our program by which skydive operators affiliate with USPA. Affiliation now requires submittal of a new form that solicits information about the specific inspection program that each jump aircraft is subject to. Operator acceptance was universal. USPA is looking forward to advising the NTSB of our efforts with respect to Safety Recommendations A08-70, A-08-73, and A-08-74 which all await FAA publication of revised Advisory Circular 105-2D.

From: NTSB
To: United States Parachute Association
Date: 4/2/2010
Response: Safety Recommendation A-08-71, which asked the FAA to work with the USPA on the same efforts, was simultaneously issued to the FAA. To assist the FAA in determining the effectiveness and use of dual-point restraint systems for parachutists, the USPA will provide the FAA with information about the diverse aircraft and skydiver seating and restraint systems currently in use. Once a determination has been made, the USPA plans to disseminate information to encourage member use. However, the NTSB points out that the FAA has not yet responded to Safety Recommendation A-08-71. We ask that the USPA continue to encourage the FAA to take the action recommended in Safety Recommendation A-08-71. Pending the USPA’s assisting the FAA in determining the most effective dual-point restraint systems for parachutists, its educating members on the findings, and its encouraging them to use the most effective dual-point restraint systems, Safety Recommendations A-08-73 and -74 are classified OPEN -- ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE. The NTSB notes the USPA’s concerns with the NTSB’s SIR but points out that it is stated in the SIR that the special investigation is not intended to represent a comprehensive statistical analysis of parachute jump operations accidents, but rather to discuss the safety issues identified and provide recommendations for addressing those issues. The USPA indicates that the use of accident information from 28 years ago overstates the current problem; however, the NTSB points out that the SIR asserts that the purpose of the selected timeframe was to present a comparison of the types of accidents that occurred in the 14 years since. This comparison reveals that the safety issues highlighted in the SIR are as prevalent today as they were 28 years ago. A common denominator in nearly all the accidents reviewed is that the pilots, most of whom were commercial or airline transport pilots, were deficient in such basic airmanship tasks as performing adequate preflight inspections of airplanes, complying with airplane weight and balance limitations, maintaining airspeed during powered flight, and executing emergency procedures. These deficiencies (or combinations of them) were noted in nearly all the accidents. Although parachutists may generally accept the risks associated with their sport, these risks should not include exposure to the types of highly preventable hazards that were indentified in these accidents and over which parachutists have little or no control. The NTSB is concerned that these pilots, whose experience levels in parachute operations ranged from one flight to hundreds of flights, were unprepared to provide the parachutists with the basic level of safety that passengers should be able to expect from professional, for-hire, or parachuting club flight operations.

From: United States Parachute Association
To: NTSB
Date: 12/22/2008
Response: Letter Mail Controlled 1/12/2009 11:34:54 AM MC# 2090001: - From Randy Ottinger, Director of Government Relations: The US. Parachute Association takes this opportunity to respond to the recommendations arising from the National, Transportation Safety Board’s investigation of the July 29, 2006 crash of the Skydive Quantum Leap de Havilland DHC-6-100 near Sullivan, Missouri. (Aircraft Accident Summary Report NTSBIAAR-08I03ISUM (Washington, DC: NTSB, 2008) Once the FAA determines its position on the effectiveness and use of dual-restraint systems on jump planes, USPA will educate its members using the association’s monthly Parachutist magazine, the USPA website, and direct e-mail communications with its affiliated Group Member drop zones. We believe this will satisfy Safety Recommendation A-08-74.